“Clinton Cash” — the explosive new book about Bill and Hillary’s road to riches — could spawn a sequel: “McAuliffe Cash.”
“He’s been a conduit of funds for the Clintons,” author Peter Schweizer said of Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe. “He has a history of trading money for access.”
McAuliffe, who served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee during Bill Clinton’s presidency, is a crucial cog in Hillary’s 2016 campaign machine.
“He’s a very important part of the Clintons’ political and financial apparatus in the business deals he has secured,” Schweizer told Watchdog.org in an interview. “It’s all part of fundraising.”
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Schweizer’s book, which hit stores Tuesday, dissects the Clinton Foundation and the Clintons’ propensity to blur the line between “charity” and self-enrichment on a global scale.
McAuliffe’s own overseas travels — before and since his 2013 election — trace the Clintons’ silk road. As governor, McAuliffe’s trade missions have been largely focused on Asia, and China in particular.
“The challenge for politicians going to China is that you have to be mindful of the political culture. As seen in the anti-corruption trials there, a lot of premiums are placed on access and the flow of funds,” Schweizer noted.
“Bill wears multiple hats, and with Terry you have a similar phenomenon: governor, fundraiser, friend with powerful business interests. It’s hard to know what hat he’s wearing.”
At home or abroad, McAuliffe’s “cluster of relationships with businessmen” begs the question: “What is he getting back in return?” the investigative reporter observed.
As governor, McAuliffe has clashed with Republican lawmakers over ethics legislation in Richmond, attempting to take the higher ground.
University of Mary Washington political science professor Stephen Farnsworth called McAuliffe “a key part” of the reform debate. But Farnsworth cautioned, “Money is like water – it will flow into the pockets of politicians one way or the other.”
In “Clinton Cash,” Schweizer points out the Clintons’ moneyman publicly disagreed with the president’s controversial pardon of fugitive financier Marc Rich.
In 2001, McAuliffe criticized the pardon, issued during Clinton’s last week in office. It came after Rich’s ex-wife donated more than $1.5 million to Hillary’s campaign, the Clinton Library and the national Democratic Party, then headed by McAuliffe.
”If I were president I wouldn’t have done [the pardon],” McAuliffe told The New York Times.
McAuliffe’s office did not respond to Watchdog’s requests for comment.
Read more by Kenric Ward at Watchdog.com.